The Burren – Corofin, Ireland - Atlas Obscura

The Burren

Corofin, Ireland

A hugely vast Irish landscape of barren rock that stretches for miles. 


Located in southwest Ireland in County Clare, this vast geological flatland seems like a rocky surface from outer space.

The name “Burren” comes from the Irish word meaning “Big Rock,” and appropriately so; the almost 100 square miles the region encompasses are covered in crags, cracks known as “grikes” and stand-alone rocks called “clints,” and sheets of stone that stretch into the horizon.

The Burren is a karst landscape, meaning it was formed when soluble rocks like limestone, gypsum, and dolomite dissolved. It’s also characterized by underground sinkholes and caves that combine to give it a unique and ever-changing topography.

The Burren National Park is the smallest of six national parks in Ireland. The region is surrounded by villages such as Kinvara, Tubber, and Kilfenora and reflects a rich archaelogical history, containing almost 100 megalithic tombs and portal dolmens like the Poulnabrone dolmen

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